10 Friendliest Countries in the World According to Expat Survey
As a Canadian call centre, we’re proud to feature lists where our country ranks amongst the smartest countries, the happiest countries, the best countries for entrepreneurs, the best countries to live, the most competitive countries to do business, the countries with the best reputation, the most peaceful countries and most recently the most sustainable countries. Today, I’m continuing with this theme and writing about the 10 friendliest countries in the world where Canada placed 4th.
This list was based on the one released by Forbes that used the data collected by the HSBC Survey of Expatriates as a foundation. “HSBC surveyed 5,339 expatriates in nearly 100 countries between May and July 2012. Respondents rated their host countries on a slew of factors related to economics, raising children and overall experience.” As some countries had fewer than 30 respondents they were deemed statistically insignificant so the survey’s final ranking only included 30 countries.
To determine which countries were the friendliest, Forbes broke the results down into 4 categories based on the “ability to befriend locals, success in learning the local language, capacity for integrating themselves into the community, and ease in which they fit into the new culture.” Based on the Forbes assessment, the ten friendliest countries in the world in 2012 are:
- Cayman Islands. The weather, favourable income and payroll tax, low pollution and safety combined with fairing well in categories like making friends, feeling welcome at work and integrating into the community put Cayman in the top spot.
- Australia. The pleasant climate and high scores in social life, making friends with locals, and feeling welcome at work (73% said they felt welcome) and a better work-life balance than in their previous country all added up to a welcoming environment to newcomers.
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- United Kingdom. Despite the high cost of living, 71% of expats would settle in the UK long term and the same percentage agreed to have integrated well into the local community. The UK scored high in both entertainment availability and quality.
- Canada. The true north ranked as the top destination for raising children and was also praised by 62% of the respondents for its friendliness of locals and by 70% for its social integration and feeling welcomed into the community.
- New Zealand. Though it fell from its top spot in the 2011 list of friendliest countries, it still earned high marks for its work culture, friendliness, weather and ability to organize local finances.
- Spain. The weather and easy going lifestyle are two things that really factored into the ranking of the country. 71% of the respondents stated they have actively tried learning the local language which is a key factor to integration.
- United States. The US scored well when it came to quality of life with 63% of the expat respondents experiencing an improvement. The climate and scenery also earned praise from 57% and a whopping 74% say they’d stay permanently.
- Bermuda. “This country scored particularly well on quality-of-life issues, such as the ability to have a high disposable income, or to own a boat or yacht, as well as great weather and easy commutes.”
- South Africa. This country was praised by expats in a range of areas such as “great work-life balance, ease in organizing accommodation and healthcare, great weather and the ability to integrate well into the culture (as agreed upon by 67%).”
- Malaysia. Better quality of life, a satisfying social life, easy local travel and better housing than in their home country helped Malaysia ranks although “many reported difficulty integrating into the local community (often because of a language barrier).”
Though a list like the 10 friendliest countries in the world may seem frivolous it can have significance for individuals and companies looking to relocate to a new country. Studies like the HSBC Survey of Expatriates can be consulted to help prepare for personal and professional life in a new country so they can “make the most of the opportunities available.”
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Miratel Solutions is a Canada call centre, eBusiness, and letter shop mail house specializing in professional fundraising services including telephone fundraising, online fundraising, lottery services, donation caging, donation processing and other donor management services. We are committed to our CSR business values and advancing the missions of the non-profits we proudly serve.